Baptism is the Sacrament through which we are ‘reborn’ as daughters and sons of God, and incorporates us into the Body of Christ, the Church.
It is the first of the Sacraments of Initiation, and may be received as an infant, as an older child, or as an adult. Each of these will require a higher level of preparation before the sacrament can take place. The other Sacraments of Initiation are Confirmation and Eucharist.
While Baptism can take place by immersion, our Parish facilities only allow Baptism through the pouring of water, usually over the forehead.
Parents who ask to have their children baptised accept the responsibility of training them in the practice of the Catholic faith, and bringing them up to keep God’s commandments.
Baptism is about being made a member of a community of faith. It is, therefore, appropriate that where the Baptism is due to occur outside of Mass, the child is presented to the community at Mass, some time before the day of Baptism.
For the Baptism of infants we require Baptism preparation for first-time parents, parents not known or new to the Parish, and parents of further children if the last Baptism took place more than 5 years ago.
For the Baptism of older children a modified form of the RCIC (Rite of Christian Initiation of Children) is used, according to age.
Adults for Baptism are expected to participate in the RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults) unless circumstances demand otherwise.
A Godparent is a ‘sponsor’, who should be a baptised and confirmed Catholic whom you regard as a good role model and Christian mentor for your child. Their role is to support the child in the development of the Catholic faith and of its relationship with God.
Therefore, at least one Godparent MUST be a Catholic who is confirmed, is over 16 years of age, for whom faith is meaningful and who attends Mass regularly. All Godparents should be baptised in a Christian denomination. The child needs one, preferably two Godparents. Being a Godparent is not an ‘honorific’, but involves a serious obligation. Hence, rarely, will more than two Godparents be accepted.
CANDLE AND DRESS
On the day of Baptism the parents usually provide a white garment or wrap, and also a small decorated candle to be lit from the Easter Candle, as symbols of the life and light of Christ the child has received.
Bookings may be made by contacting the Parish Office. Except in the case of hardship, a donation to assist our parish in its mission would be appreciated.
Usually Baptisms are held each Sunday at 12.00 noon, – in St. Joseph’s on the 1st, 3rd and 5th Sunday of each month, and at St. Thomas Aquinas on the 2nd and 4th. Other times may be negotiated.